Let the Poet’s Hand not Be Swift
Let the poet’s hand not be swift to take up the pen, nor his tongue be impatient to speak; trust neither hand nor tongue to the guidance of Fortuna. To ensure greater success for the work, let the discriminating mind, as a prelude to action, defer the operation of hand and tongue, and ponder long on the subject matter. Let the mind’s interior compass first circle the whole extent of the material.
- Geoffrey of Vinsauf (Translation from the original Latin, Margaret Nims)